Podhigai Solai Sustainable Village,
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Inspired from the rural settlement character of Tamilnadu, the master planning for Podhigai solai is done for a sustainable, healthy community living.
The Master planning has taken shape according to 4 main Zones : Farming zone, Social Zone, Economic Zone and Residential Zone. Keeping in mind the different users, activities, space and time - zones are separated into public, semi-public and private.
The housing units are zoned in a cluster type planning in which each cluster has common open space areas and service areas. In addition to housing units, the Podhigai solai master plan consists of a Multi purpose hall for Yoga, Meditation and gathering, a Community kitchen with dining, Live stock area and parking spaces.
Moving towards a sustainable lifestyle, Grey water treatment plants, compost areas and solar panel areas are kept within each cluster to minimise ,recycle and reuse waste as much as possible.
In order to create a safe, vehicle free outdoor environment around the houses, the internal streets of the clusters are pedestrianized.
The clusters are connected to each other for better community interaction. The main advantage of cluster housing than row housing is the accessibility to larger open spaces which engage the community socially and culturally. The negative spaces are effectively eliminated through the introverted zoning of housing units towards the internal open spaces.
In an era of nuclear houses disconnected with the surrounding community, Podhigai solai housing attempts to achieve emotional wellness and a happy community life for the residents.
Podhigai Community Centre
Podhigai Community Centre
With a back drop of Western ghats, this community building in Vasudevanallur in Thenkasi district aims to bring people together for the causes of sustainable way of living.
It is a training centre to raise awareness to people who wish to learn organic farming, integrated farming systems and implement them in their own farms.
This community-building consists of a 50 people capacity classroom, male and female dormitories, a kitchen, dining spaces and an admin area.
The brick dome roof receives the first attention with its strong symmetry rested on the four arches below . It is a load bearing structure in which the load is transmitted to the ground with the help of the cob walls.
The L-shaped courtyard along the corridor connects the interior spaces with the exterior. The wooden columns define the corridor which has a sloped roof with pot tiles. This corridor, which is a transition space, also acts as a multi-purpose space in which dining, leisure and interaction activities take place.
The windows are provided on top of the walls for letting hot air to escape out whereas the sill level windows are kept on opposite walls for cross ventilation.
The exterior surface is finished using Lime plasters. The interior surfaces are finished with mud and lime.
This Podhigai solai community centre will become a symbol of the community reflecting their values of sustainable living with its humbly standing architecture.
Sustainable architecture | Community centre in Tamilnadu | Kali natural buildings initiative | Eco friendly architects